Despite bipartisan support from local leaders in the nation's capital, a parental-choice proposal for the District of Columbia is running an obstacle course through Congress. It faces a hurdle in the House appropriations process and a roadblock in the Senate, with Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) joining Democrats to oppose the plan last week. In one advance, the bill won approval from the House Government Reform Committee on July 10.... In 2002, 29 percent of Americans ages 25-29 had earned at least a bachelor's degree, up from 23 percent in 1980, according to an annual report to the president on child and family statistics released last week.... A survey released last week by the Heritage Foundation updates the scoreboard in the fight for parental choice in education: voucher states: 6; states offering education tax relief: 6; charter-school states: 40. School Choice 2003: How States Are Providing Greater Opportunity in Education, by Krista Kafer, is available online and in print.... Standardized test scores of students in charter schools serving a general population showed moderately greater improvement in a one-year period than those of their peers in traditional public schools, according to a new study from the Manhattan Institute.